Tuesday, March 30, 2004

# Posted 4:52 AM by Patrick Belton  

ANOTHER DAY OF TERRORIST ATTACKS IN UZBEKISTAN: Today's suicide bombing in Tashkent is the second straight; there was also an explosion on Sunday night in Bukhara, which may have been a government attack on IMU assets which led to the current spate of reciprocal attacks.

Due to Uzbekistan's tight control over the media, it is difficult to get hold of information about the current situation, but the choice of targets (such as yesterday's at the Chorsu bazaar, at a time of overlap between two police shifts) seems to reflect a desire to target police and security services. The degree to which news reports are being suppressed by Tashkent is astonishing - yesterday, out of 15 policemen one reporter approached at the bazaar, only one admitted that there had been a bombing, with the remainder explaining that the market was closed for a "sanitary inspection." Reuters is reporting that there were several separate bombing incidents yesterday, with two caused by female suicide bombers, and that four to five separate explosions took place this morning at roughly 8:15 local time. This morning, Tashkent's principal thoroughfares are closed by checkpoints and manned by servicemen with bulletproof vests carrying Kalashikov rifles.

If there was involvement by Hizb-ut-Tahrir in the current round of attacks, it would represent a marked tactical change for the Islamist organization, which to the moment has been peaceful, though it has generated concern for violent potentialities from terrorism and oil industry analysts.
(0) opinions -- Add your opinion

Comments: Post a Comment